August 11, 2021

Hell's Builders


Hell's Builders

“There is not a single builder in Paradise.”

– Stanislav Lisichenko, Russian restaurateur

On August 8, Russia celebrated its sixty-fifth “Builder’s Day.”

We know there are no builders in Paradise, it seems, because when Heaven and Hell agreed to build a bridge to connect the two “respected departments,” the Devil and his crew found an empty expanse when they reached the midpoint of the project. After calling up Heaven, they were told that not one builder had been admitted.

Staff at Russian news outlet Kommersant spoke with several businesspeople involved in Russian construction projects about the workers, who are the backbone of infrastructure, and most of them gave mixed reviews. Respondents told tales of pipes sealed with chewing gum and amazing feats, replete with stereotypes of “lazy” workers, “bunglers,” and descriptions of at turns soulful, deceptive, and respectable folk. Sergey Rak, Deputy Director of the Russian Franchising Association, repeated advice from a Russified German foreman “not to pay a dime before the workers hand over the work.”

Nikita Kruschev first proposed the holiday, which celebrates all workers involved in the construction process of buildings and infrastructure. ALL workers – not just the professionals! As Russia is facing a recent shortage of builders due to the loss of cheap migrant workers during the pandemic, they have enlisted the help of prisoners, too.

 

 

 

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